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Product Overview

Black gangsters in 1930 harlem fights dutch schultz who is trying to horn in on their numbers racket.


Studio MGM
SKU 40022395
UPC 027616699527
UPC 14 00027616699527
Format DVD
Release Date 1/21/2014
Rating Rating
Organized Crime
Race Relations
Social Issues
Theatrical Release
True Story
Editors Note
Note HOODLUM stars Laurence Fishburne in a powerful performance as Ellsworth "Bumpy" Johnson, the notorious Harlem gangster of the 1930s. Director Bill Duke mixes a sumptuous visual style with a message of black empowerment. Bumpy gets out of prison and goes to work for the Harlem numbers powerhouse known as Madam Queen (Cicely Tyson), bringing him into conflict with the psychopathic Dutch Schultz (Tim Roth), who is trying to take over the numbers racket in Harlem. As the blood flows through Harlem streets, those around Bumpy begin to question his methods-- and his morals.
Plot Summary
Summary Bill Duke's HOODLUM, with its rich visuals, brutal violence, and moral probing, pays homage to THE GODFATHER and other classic gangster films while exploring the nature of black empowerment as it relates to criminality. The film is Duke's second collaboration with Laurence Fishburne, and as with DEEP COVER, Fishburne delivers a compelling performance. He plays Ellsworth "Bumpy" Johnson, the legendary Harlem gangster of the 1930s who fought Dutch Schultz for control of the numbers racket. Tim Roth is hilariously grotesque as Schultz, a villain whose foul mouth sets a new cinematic standard. Duke gets strong performances from Andy Garcia as Lucky Luciano and Chi McBride as Bumpy's right-hand man, Illinois. Vanessa Williams plays Francine, a social activist who loves Bumpy but can't understand the violent path he's chosen. Bumpy, a surprisingly civic-minded criminal, goes to war with Schultz to protect Harlem from the interloper, but as the body count mounts in the community he's trying to protect, he ends up losing the support of those closest to him. The film's uneasy mix of mayhem and humor makes for compelling viewing, and the moral questions it raises about black empowerment and criminality only add to the intrigue.
USA Today "...Charging the action is an electric three-prong attack: Laurence Fishburne as magnetic Johnson, Tim Roth as a wonderfully no-class Schultz and Andy Garcia as a cool and cocky Luciano..." -- 3 out of 4 stars 08/27/1997 p.2D
New York Times "...Mr. Fishburne is as coolly ruthless as Al Pacino's Michael Corleone in THE GODFATHER....Ms. Tyson is also memorable..." 08/27/1997 p.C16
Entertainment Weekly "...This is Duke's most accomplished job of direction yet. He gets a juicy performance out of Tim Roth..." 09/05/1997 p.51
Chicago Sun-Times "...Duke has made a historical drama as much as a thriller..." 08/27/1997 p.51
Andy Garcia
Laurence Fishburne
Tim Roth
Name Bill Duke
Link Search Link
Cast & Crew
Chi McBride - Star
Beau Starr - Star
Mike Starr - Star
William Atherton - Star
Andy Garcia - Star
Richard Bradford - Star
Ed O'Ross - Star
Joe Guzaldo - Star
Queen Latifah - Star
Vanessa Williams - Star
Paul Benjamin - Star
Laurence Fishburne - Star
Clarence Williams III - Star
Tim Roth - Star
Loretta Devine - Star
Cicely Tyson - Star
Richard Bruno - Costume Designer
Frank Tidy - Director of Photography
Bill Johnson - Special Makeup Effects
Chris Brancato - Screenwriter
Charles C. Bennett - Production Designer
Paul Eckstein - Producer
Harry Keramidas - Editor
Bill Brown - Sound Effects Editor
Helen Sugland - Producer
Frank Mancuso Jr. - Producer
Elmer Bernstein - Composer
Bill Duke - Producer
Chris Brancato - Producer
Laurence Fishburne - Producer
Bill Duke - Director
Technical Info
Original Release Date 1997
Catalog ID 906995
UPC 00027616699527
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 130 minutes
Color Color
Original Language English
Available Subtitles English, French, Spanish
Available Audio Tracks English [CC], English, French Dubbed
DVD, Pan and Scan (TV Format), Widescreen, French, Spanish, Subtitled, Dolby Digital (5.1) Surround Sound, Trailers, Trivia
Product Attributes
Actor Fishbourne,Laurence
Label Mgm Entertainment
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD

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